Friday, September 12, 2014

Everyone is Different

C takes a bite of onion during lunch, makes a face and quickly spits it out. She looks in her han d to see what she had eaten.
"What is this???" She asks looking unsure.
"Its cooked onion, " I reply. I pause and wait for her response.
"Its icky." C spit a bit more then wiped it on her plate.
"You're not a fan of onion. I'm so glad you tried it so now you know. I wonder if you will like it next time?". We sat with the idea of the unliked onion for a bit.
" I like onion," said Z after a moment, holding up a bigger piece and then eating it up.
"I like onion too!" S added with a big smile.
"I like onion. Especially when its sweet!  S, Z and I like onion. C doesn't. Everyone likes and doesn't like different things. Isn't that interesting?"

Our conversation continued to talk about the things each child liked and didn't like, what our favorites are and what we know about each other. It felt good to acknowledge not just the good but the dislikes. Discussions like this are our way to learn about each other through our differences and similarities. 

Later in the day it was potty time. I was sitting on the floor available to help as needed during the process. Some children finished quickly and returned to play.  C came and sat close to me and E. She was carrying a tray with a cloth and a few buttons and jewels.
"I have some candy. Wanna have some?" She asked me. I explained I was busy in the bathroom.
"You wanna have some, E?". They are gluten-free.  They has no wheat in thems." She stated proudly. E cannot have gluten and this is something we have talked about often.  

When we know the differences of those around us and they accepted without judgment we normalize the fact that each of us are different.  To know our differences means we know each other.  There is an intimacy and safety when we understand the differences of another and it allows us to relax into the flow of our day together in a way where imagination, creativity and inquiry are uninhibited.  

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